Globalist Review

A New Order for this Century and the Next

-America's role in the 21st century-
-Balancing social and economic growth-
-The next stage of our economy; sustainable capitalism-
-Engaging our enemies and allies-
-Recovering and maintaining moral leadership-
-The role of soft and hard power-
-Unilateralism or Multilateralism-
-Empire or Hegemony-

Questions or Comments:

Monday, March 31, 2008

Finally, Transatlantic Communication

Bush and Brown in push to deal with crisis

By James Blitz and George Parker in London

Published: March 30 2008 22:01 | Last updated: March 30 2008 22:01

George W. Bush, US president, and Gordon Brown, UK prime minister, have agreed to step up co-operation over the crisis in financial markets. They are setting up a joint working group which will develop plans to monitor and regulate the banking system.

At the heart of the proposals, agreed on Wednesday by Hank Paulson, US Treasury secretary, and Alistair Darling, UK chancellor, is the creation of a body made up of senior Treasury and regulatory figures from London and Washington.

Mr Brown and Mr Bush will discuss greater UK-US co-operation in tackling the financial crisis when they meet at a Nato summit in Bucharest this week and a Washington summit next month.

Whitehall officials say the new UK-US working group, whose membership and terms of reference are being finalised, will seek to establish a common approach on how to respond to the crisis before next month’s meetings of the Group of Seven, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

However, officials say that, given the huge role that London and New York play in financial markets, the significance of the new body will go beyond that.

“We have both been seised of the fact that we need to do something to respond to the financial market turbulence, that we need to generate a shared agenda in the run-up to the spring meetings,” said a senior UK Treasury official.

According to UK Treasury officials, the new body will examine the role of the credit ratings agencies in evaluating risk, amid concerns that they did not fully appreciate the exposure of mortgage-based products to a fall in the housing market.

It will also look at what banks and other institutions need to do to improve transparency in the valuation of complex financial products. Above all, the body will also seek to improve day-to-day co-operation between financial regulators in the US and the UK.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Presidential Leadership

International leadership for the next American President begins with domestic leadership, a reasonable vision for world order and a clear understanding for the challenges of the 21st century and beyond. Waging an effective foreign policy abroad relies on sound domestic programs and consistency in messaging. Too often a president is held unaccountable for a lack of synergy between the homeland and his or her dealings abroad. To empower the president overseas, he or she must implement an aggressive program at home. In the first hundred days, the president must lay down a clear and substantive program to ensure progress towards achieving increased social and economic rights for all Americans, empower the citizenry to take on global challenges- through their work, family, expectations of the state and community commitments-, increase government efficiency by setting fiscal precedents and cutting costs, and use policy tools to promote innovative developments in the economy. More specifically the domestic agenda should focus on creating a streamlined national healthcare system with universal healthcare targeting preventative care and fundamental health needs. Americans must feel confident in their access to basic needs. Health, financial security, education, and affordable clean transportation are the fundamentals. With specific regard to education, the national curriculum should be revised with added emphasis to current events, debate and rhetoric, world history, and language. Building on the individual, the executive must push for a national system of carbon cap and trade accompanied by a substantial package of tax incentives to green businesses, alternative energy utilities, energy efficient building upgrades, job training programs, and bio fuel infrastructure projects.

As the president begins his or her international outreach, a message of efficiency, consistency and innovation are vital. A new president does not wipe the record clean from the last administration. The next administration must have a fresh, deliberate and consistent message to deliver to international leaders backed by universal priorities to be accentuated in the most vital regions. On the President’s short list must be the value of the dollar. A strong dollar is a vital component to international financial security and translates into crucial and significant need for growth in exports on the domestic front matched with fiscal prudence.

Using an effectively implemented domestic plan, the executive should deliver him or herself with the necessary foundation to talk about tough issues abroad. A broad coalition of new and historical partners should be forged around the most pressing priorities, those being energy, the environment, development, and global security. As the world economy faces higher energy prices, the next president must provide a clear path to solutions. Global warming and energy needs are no domestic issue but one of universal interest. The U.S. should be on the cutting edge of providing solutions in the form of a multi pronged package of new products, treaties, and a powerful coalition of the willing to pressure non-conformers. Global priorities that consistently bring a broad coalition of partners together should be emphasized in an attempt to forge a more united and international consciousness. Indeed, those issues that bring regions and the international community together, even if a substantial burden for tangible progress falls on the shoulders of developed countries, should be a focus.

In this century the United States could provide independent electrical generation capabilities to Africans across the continent through wind and solar technologies, become a net exporter of alternative energy goods and services, and significantly curb its use of fossil fuels to be replaced by bio-fuels. Taking responsibility for our shortcomings in the past, the United States has the potential, with strong leadership, to push for a global system of carbon trading, investment in rain forest and vital habitat rehabilitation projects and protection of global bio-diversity. Initial confidence can be garnered in this endeavor by joining the Kyoto treaty, leading the development of a Kyoto 2 treaty, and further rallying signers to take part in innovative Global Green Infrastructure Projects. These projects could be enhanced by providing indebted American college graduates with dept relief in exchange for public service and in particular young engineers and scientists for government research and development of alternative energy products and infrastructure construction.

As global polarization increases over perceived world inequities and western incursions on sovereignty, a populist program of development involving the global community would be a positive step to break down barriers and bring citizens from around the world together. True leadership is a president that can step onto the world stage with a message of global unity and environmental protection, providing the tools to make the planet greener with American products.

While this is an idealistic vision of executive leadership, core priorities also require sincere attention. America’s relationship with partners in the War on Terror must be rekindled and enhanced with special regard for Russia and progress in Afghanistan. Furthermore, a steady redeployment of U.S troops in Iraq should be coupled with a renewed international diplomatic offensive to energize post-conflict reconstruction in Afghanistan and pressure Iraqi political progress with the added threat of troop reductions. Additionally, an engaged Iran would be a more constructive actor than a combative Iran. Iran should be pushed to cease funding Shia militias in Iraq and Lebanon in exchange for a U.S. supported public and cooperative role in Iraqi reconstruction.

Also, see February post and comments- "Integrating the Rising Powers"

What is the number one priority in Iraq today?

Which presidential candidate presents the clearest path for America's foreign affairs?