Collapse of the US “Imminent”

World Strategy Map Battlefront Map

World Strategy Map
Battlefront Map

Challenges posed by Russia, China, and the Islamic State confront the US with insoluble foreign policy dilemmas. There is no easy way out of any of these conflicts. When combined with US domestic problems — the race war of blacks against whites, Obama’s war against the US economy and US energy, skyrocketing debt, and the inability of the US’ European populations to breed to replacement levels — and one may begin to sense an imminent collapse of the US.

But which “US” is in danger of collapse? The US government, or the country known as the US? The government, after all, is not the country. As the US was originally conceived, the government was merely the means of protecting the country and allowing the people to build their lives and ambitions as they saw fit — as long as they refrained from violence, fraud, and theft.

Since then, the US government has grown huge and unwieldy, impinging upon every aspect of the lives of its citizens and residents. Judging by the most recent US administrations, one might think that the US government is intent upon strangling the country — to destroy its economy, industry, and will to prevail against challenges. Should that be allowed to occur, the US likely would collapse.

Don’t be confused by the boom in US oil & gas production. The US government could crush those industries with a stroke of Obama’s executive pen. But what about the decline in US manufacturing costs? Will increased efficiencies rescue the US economy from its government?

Part of the reason for the narrowing gap is that wages have been rising in China. And American companies have been boosting their productivity faster than many of their international competitors. But perhaps the single largest factor is that fracking has helped dramatically drive down the price of oil and gas that’s being used in energy intensive industries such as steel, aluminum, paper and petrochemicals. BCG calculates that U.S. industrial electricity prices are now 30% to 50% lower than those of other major exporters. __ Fortune

Ah, yes. We had forgotten to look at US electricity costs. The cost of US electric power is much lower than that of European competitors. This is because the US has been slow to adopt the “green energy swamp” approach to economic suicide which the Europeans seem determined to follow. As long as costs for US natural gas and electricity are appreciably lower than those of its competitors, the US will have a distinct advantage in manufacturing. Thus all the European manufacturers that have moved operations to the US to take advantage.

“A 5% price discrepancy in manufacturing between China and the US doesn’t amount to much,” says BCG’s David Gee, “when you consider that US manufacturers face the risks of delay when shipping from China, the threat of port strikes, and the local investments and partnerships that Beijing often requires of foreign companies doing business there.”

Lower energy prices can also open up new opportunities such as a using natural gas to power fleet vehicles and trucks, which would reduce American dependence on foreign oil and cut greenhouse gases. Natural gas can also be converted into hydrogen to power fuel cells like the ones in Toyota’s TM 1.17% Mirai passenger car. (The Japanese car giant will start taking orders for the Mirai in California this summer.)

Over the last few years, cheap energy has encouraged players in various industries to earmark $138 billion for new U.S.-based investments. This spring, for example, the petrochemical giant Sasol SSL 2.22% started construction on an $8.1 billion ethane cracker at Lake Charles, La. And energy companies like Cheniere LNG 0.76% are building multi-billion LNG terminals on the Gulf of Mexico to export overseas, where natural gas can be three to four times more expensive than it is in the U.S.

How long will America’s advantage last? Harvard Business School’s Michael Porter, who along with BCG issued a new report in June called “America’s Unconventional Energy Opportunity,” says that America has about a 15-year lead on other nations when it comes to fracking. The most telling number to make that point? The U.S. has 101,117 fracked wells, followed by Canada’s 16,990. By contrast China has 258. __

Perhaps the collapse of the US economy can be pushed back for a number of years, if future US presidents are not carbon copies of Barack Obama. Wait and see.

What about US allies? Under Bush, many traditional US allies had begun to back away. And under Obama, the rush away from US alliances has been a veritable stampede. And yet, in all the foreign challenges the US faces from Russia, China, and the Islamic State, something odd is causing at least a modest sea change in the global anti-US sentiment.

With Russia, China, and the Islamic State flexing their collective muscles, the world looks to the United States to take the lead. Yet, it is not 1941 and not everything is possible through American power alone.

Some regions have the capabilities required to address their own security challenges. Europe, for example, is sufficiently united and developed to deal with Russia’s hybrid war in Ukraine. The Indo-Asia-Pacific is also capable of balancing China’s rise. The Middle East is less capable of dealing with continued strife in the region, but the fundamental answer to the region’s problems must be answered by the nations and peoples of the region. In all three regions, America’s breadth of diplomatic, economic, and military power combine with like-minded nations to balance those who would return us to the days of power politics. ____

The dynamic balance of powers can quickly swing from one extreme to another. An invasion here, a massive over-reach there, before you know it two BRICS formerly in ascent begin to acquire a noxious smell.

Today, China is overwhelmingly seen as a national security threat in countries like Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippines, while in other states such as Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia, where there are more positive popular perceptions of China, the ruling governments have been hedging their bets by fortifying strategic ties with Washington. __

Putin’s threats of nuclear war in particular are pushing much of Europe back into the orbit of US diplomatic and military alliance. Putin grows more desperate as his out-of-balance economy shrinks. The out-migration of Russia’s talented brains, and a rapidly shrinking working-age population makes the situation worse. It is too late for Putin to create a Spartan Russia. Domestic unrest is growing, and desperate people tend to take desperate actions.

China is in much better condition than is Russia, but it suffers its own problems of economic mis-allocation, widespread poisoning of land-rivers-air-food, rampant corruption, and a mistrust and fear of government institutions. And China still needs Ukrainian engines — despite its “alliance” with Putin’s Russia. Russia is “stuck” without Ukrainian arms, but China can still do backdoor deals with Ukraine as long as it pays its bills.

Foreign observers understand how desperate Russia is becoming, and do not want to be caught behind the next “iron curtain” that Russia decides to throw down. Hence the move toward the US — as distasteful as such a move may be for many.

None of this erases the huge US national debt, or the dysgenic shifting of US demographics — to say nothing of the monstrous US governmental impingement upon liberty, enterprise, and opportunity.

Still, when one embarks on comparing different nations and power blocs, one must embrace the discipline of “relativistic thinking.” Since capital flows to the greatest opportunity of returns, the global game of power, wealth, and dominance is a dynamic game of judging relative advantage.

The imminent collapse of the US has been confidently predicted on a regular basis for the past 238 years. But as we have learned, it is quite difficult to predict anything — especially the future.

Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst. Always look to the best location for you and your loved ones. Best to let your actions do your talking for you.

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10 Responses to Collapse of the US “Imminent”

  1. yoananda says:

    strange what you are saying about Ukraine. Here, in France, popular believe is that Ukraine war is a NATO war. Russian bear is only in a defensive position.
    I insist : it is the popular believe despite government propaganda that try’s to tells it’s a Russian aggression (which is a none sense for everybody a little informed in my country).
    I wonder if you percieved well the situation in europe, but, in can only speak for french, I don’t know how other countries populations perceive the situation (leaders and media often perceive how they are told to do, but it’s not the case for people).

    • alfin2101 says:

      Yes, I understand that opinions in western Europe are quite mixed. NATO is involved in the Baltic states, but not in Ukraine. The US and UK have helped train Ukrainian troops, but very little if any advanced weaponry has come to Ukraine via any states that participate in NATO (except Poland).

      It is well known that Kremlin propaganda exerts a great deal of influence in France and Germany. People who wish to be “informed” will frequently choose to believe the counter-factual narrative, against all credible evidence. They often have strong emotional reasons to do so. For those, I recommend they move to Moscow, start a business, and try to stay alive while speaking their minds freely. Bonne chance.

  2. bob sykes says:

    America’s main problems are the cultural and race wars and the mutual disgust and hatred among its many subpopulations. This is a country that cannot agree on any fundamentals. It is much like the defunct Austro-Hungarian and Russian empires, prison houses of “nations” to quote Lenin. America’s internal differences are so great that it may become ungovernable as a representative democracy and may require an authoritarian regime to keep it intact.

    The facts that real incomes of workers are falling sharply, of the middle class are declining slowly, that a record percentage of Americans are out of the labor pool, that the economy cannot generate enough revenue to support the federal, state and local governs, that several major cities (Baltimore, Philadephia and Chicago in particular) are following the road to collapse travelled by Detroit, Campden, Stockton, et al., that fully half the black population survives on welfare … all indicate that there are deep structural problems in the American economy and that this is an economy is decline.

    I agree with yoananda re Ukraine. The US coup started it. Minsk II, which was largely Putin’s idea, would solve end if implemented. It calls for a constitution change in Ukraine that would devolve substantial home rule powers on the oblasts. Despite having signed it, Poroschenko refuses to implement it. The US, left out of Minsk I and II and Moscow, apparently is encouraging Poroschenko’s obstinacy. Putin is not the problem, Obama is.

    • alfin2101 says:

      Here’s another one you many not have heard of: Obama forced the Baltic states to illegally secede from the USSR back in 1991. Another US coup, you see. I know it is true because the Kremlin propaganda outlets and Kremlin troll factories certify its truth. No questions can possibly remain.

      Conspiracy theories are easy if you are not required to provide credible proof. According to Hitler, if you repeat the same preposterous lie often enough the people will assume it is true. But Hitler had nothing on the KGB or its successors.

      • thebillyc says:

        Hitler did not say that: His propaganda minister did.

        [comment edited to remove anti-semitic content]

        • alfin2101 says:

          Sorry, but if you follow the link in the above comment, you will see that Hitler himself coined the phrase in “Mein Kampf.” Nazi history is not one of my strong points, either. Probably because I have never liked Nazis of any variety, Illinois or not.

  3. Craig says:

    I just don’t see it in my daily life, this cultural strife and race hatred. I think it’s purposely drummed up by the (anti-everything good) media, political hacks and the race-baters. I was recently at a huge conference in San Diego with people from all walks of life and dozens of other nations. The last concern on anybody’s mind was all this ISIS, Ukraine, Ferguson, Climate Change crap. In fact the focus was how to make business and thereby life better for everyone.

    My inner-city neighborhood in the (lily white) upper midwest is completely diverse and there is none of these problems, no fights, vandalism or cross burnings.

    Yes, the middle class is suffering, but it’s not everyday people bent on race-hatred and homophobia driving it from the bottom up, it’s the far left pushing destructive policies and out and out lies from the top down. People left to their own devices without the fomenting of this cultural hatred via traditional and Social media would just get on, in my opinion.

  4. NekasM says:

    Sveik, Craig lives also in la-la-land just like former Yugoslavian population in late 80’s, from outside all looked like usually,till… Rome in 200 AD with Rome 1900 AD, from multi-ethnic city to mostly mono-ethnic, and that’s only one story,city,place in past in present in future.
    If You can create a fire then it’s because you already have the right ingredients. Blood is thicker then water , apple don’t fall to far away from tree- mostly. Wishful thinking,Your Achilles heel!
    Black swan event,
    Good luck from dying Europa:)

    • alfin2101 says:

      You should take Bob’s comments above with a grain of salt. There is only one specific fractured population in the US that truly hates others. This population of haters comprises several subsets of the US black population. Spurred on by black clerics and political activists, members of these specific US black communities hate whites, hispanics, asians, Jews, and they particularly hate Latvians, for some odd reason. I personally, have been generally fond of Latvians. 😉

      US black populations make up about 14% of the overall US population, but probably less than half of these mixed tribal groups of blacks actually hate non-black populations groups in an obsessive manner. Like most in the US, the majority is too busy living their lives to waste them in obsessive hatreds.

      1980s Yugoslavia is not a good comparison to the state of affairs in most of the US. Obama has been trying hard to make things more that way, however. The reality of racial relations in the US seems to be that violent subsets of blacks are alienating virtually all other population groups — including most non-violent blacks.

  5. Craig says:

    NekasM – got any more irrelevant aphorisms? I mean can’t we all just get along!!!!

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