The end of American hegemony

The end of American hegemony

There are 12 comments on the Asheville Citizen-Times story from Oct 7, 2008, titled The end of American hegemony. In it, Asheville Citizen-Times reports that:

Comments on Topix forums : America has become a pretty discouraging place. If Ronald Reagan were still with us, I wonder if he would again refer to the United States as a city on a hill, a light unto the world.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Asheville Citizen-Times.

GaryA

Foster City, CA

#1 Oct 8, 2008
While I wholeheartedly agree with Roberts about the fact that America is facing the end of its hegemony (and good riddance!), he bowdlerizes the true history of the Reagan presidency. Is it by accident that in the ‘Authors Bio’ that Craig gives in this paean to Reagan, he describes himself as an “assistant of the US Treasury,” but neglects to mention he served in the Reagan era and that he was a Reagan appointee?[Google other pieces by Roberts and he mentions his ties to Reagan.]
Inter alia, Roberts writes, "Reagan defeated stagflation and ended the cold war, producing a peace dividend to be divided among taxpayers, social programs, and national debt reduction."
First off, Reagan only defeated stagflation by jacking up interest rates so high it led to a severe recession in the early 1980s, the worst since the depression, with a surge in unemployment.
Here’s how Mike Hersh debunks this oft-repeated myth:
Quote Hersh:
Which brings us to myth number two: Jimmy Carter wrecked the economy, and Reagan's bold tax cuts saved it.
This is utterly absurd. Economic growth indices -- GDP, jobs, revenues -- were all positive when Carter left office. All plunged after Reagan policies took effect.
Reagan didn't cure inflation, the main economic problem during the Carter years. Carter's Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker tried when he raised interest rates. That's the opposite of what Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan has done to keep inflation low.
Carter's policies and people fought inflation, but maintained real growth. On the other hand, Reagan's policies helped cause the worst recession since the Great Depression: two bleak years with nearly double-digit unemployment! Reaganomics failed in less than a year, and it took an entire second year for the economy to recover from the failure.
Carter didn't cause the inflation problem, but his tough policies and smart personnel solved it. Unfortunately for Carter, it took too long for the good results to kick in. Not only didn't Reagan help whip inflation, he actually opposed the Volcker policies!
End Hersh. On-line at: http://www.americanpolitics.com/20020319Hersh...
Reagan didn’t end the Cold War. Reaganistas argue the USSR collapsed after trying to keep up with The Gipper’s increasing defense spending. But in fact defense spending in the USSR was flat during the Reagan era. The USSR collapsed of its own weight of fiscal and military mismanagement, something that plagues America today.(See: "Reagan and the Russians," in The Atlantic Monthly, on-line at: http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/foreign/r... )
Roberts’ comments about Reagan’s contributions to fiscal soundness, social programs and national debt reduction are breathtakingly cynical and misleading.
Re the national debt, the San Francisco Chronicle’s business writer, David Lazarus, has noted that,“In 1981, shortly after taking office, Reagan lamented "runaway deficits" that were then approaching $80 billion, or about 2.5 percent of gross domestic product. Within only two years, however, his policies had succeeded in enlarging the deficit to more than $200 billion, or 6 percent of GDP.”
He added that, according to economics professor Alan Auerbach,“‘It was up to the first President Bush, the loyal soldier, to clean up the mess by raising taxes, and he didn't get re-elected because of it,’ Auerbach observed.‘Clinton also had to raise taxes because of Reagan.’ Over time, the Reagan deficit became the Clinton surplus.”
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi...

Roberts is entitled to his own opinions about Reagan, but he shouldn’t be allowed to get away with rewriting history to make his patron and mentor (and himself) look good.
more thugs

Denver, CO

#2 Oct 8, 2008

Since: Aug 07

Greer, SC

#3 Oct 8, 2008
Taxes never have to be raised.

Spending does need to be controlled
Ghost Dog

United States

#4 Oct 8, 2008
Somebody has to pay for the debt racked up by Reagan and "W"! They charged their spending to US, our kids and our grandkids, lousy basterds!

Since: Aug 07

Greer, SC

#5 Oct 9, 2008
Ghost Dog wrote:
Somebody has to pay for the debt racked up by Reagan and "W"! They charged their spending to US, our kids and our grandkids, lousy basterds!
Debt is increased and authorized by congress. You, of course, consider the republican Presidents "bastards" but let the other 500 check writers off the hook.
Keith former Gun-bunny

United States

#6 Oct 9, 2008
If America has become a pretty discouraging place, you are more than welcome to move to Iraq. Nobody holding you here.
BS Detector

AOL

#7 Oct 9, 2008
Beep, beep, beep.

Mr Detector was initially encouraged by the thoughtfully written analysis by Dr Roberts, and the interesting counter-point made by the gentleman from California. Unfortunately, after that, the discussion quickly deteriorated into the usual local belligerently ignorant partisan stinky pile-fest.

I guess it's awfully hard to learn anything when you already know everything.
Be A Hero

AOL

#8 Oct 9, 2008
What is it about these Reagan guys that makes them so prickly whenever somebody (often rightfully so)criticizes their fearless leader's mostly failed attempts to sneak his neo-con tax cut for the rich by the unimpressed economic realities that stand guard at the gate of a true free-market economy?

Maybe most of the time they can count their blessings, being one of the "chosen few", and let it slide ... perhaps until it come from their arch-nemesis, the NY Times.

However, I do appreciate Dr Roberts de-bunking the popular myth circulating that the whole crisis in the economy is a result of Jimmy Carter - bless his heart - attempting to help average Americans have a fair share of the American dream, or the notion that g-dub and his merry band of narcissistic sociopaths are not just simply bailing out themselves and their cronies.

But Americans, quite frankly, are fed up with all the finger pointing and partisan blame game antics. After all, who cares who's fault it is, really? What we need to focus on is solutions.

To that end, I thought the commentary offered some interesting analysis, however, I was puzzled by one statement the author made, as follows:

"Market purists who claim the only solution is for housing prices to fall to prior levels overlook that rising inventories can push prices below prior levels, thus causing more distress. They also overlook the role of interest rates. If a worsening credit crisis dries up mortgage lending and pushes mortgage interest rates higher, the rise in interest rates could offset the fall in home prices, and mortgages would remain unaffordable even in a falling housing market."

After seeming fairly down-to-earth for most of his presentation, all of a sudden Dr Roberts throws out the word "purists" as if it's an obscenity, then proceeds to explain how we can't really trust "free markets" after all, and we need some "experts" (like himself and the others that created the mess, possibly), to hold our hands while they walk us through the shadow of the valley back to a more enlightened financial promised land.

I wonder if maybe the author has a property that is diminishing in value that he's trying to unload?

Economics is really quite simple outside of Wall Street, Washington, DC, and the hallowed halls of higher learning. Live within your means, stay out of debt, and save money.

But my main purpose for writing that I want to thank my Dad, who passed away a few months ago, for instilling in me the values that have enabled me to mostly avoid being a victim of the whole self-serving, criminal theft of America by the corporate kleptocrats that have hijacked our government and raided the US Treasury for their own personal gain. Dad was a true American Hero, a decorated veteran of WWII, who lef this life with a hard-earned modest estate after providing for his large family, not owing one dime to anyone for anything. He taught me the value of a good education, hard work, saving money, and not being impressed with "big shots" who seek to manipulate others in order to achieve their dreams of financial affluence at your expense. BTW, he thought Reagan was a blow-hard.

Thanks, Dad. I love you and I miss you.
The Truth

Charlotte, NC

#9 Oct 9, 2008
Be A Hero wrote:
Economics is really quite simple outside of Wall Street, Washington, DC, and the hallowed halls of higher learning. Live within your means, stay out of debt, and save money.
But my main purpose for writing that I want to thank my Dad, who passed away a few months ago, for instilling in me the values that have enabled me to mostly avoid being a victim of the whole self-serving, criminal theft of America by the corporate kleptocrats that have hijacked our government and raided the US Treasury for their own personal gain. Dad was a true American Hero, a decorated veteran of WWII, who lef this life with a hard-earned modest estate after providing for his large family, not owing one dime to anyone for anything. He taught me the value of a good education, hard work, saving money, and not being impressed with "big shots" who seek to manipulate others in order to achieve their dreams of financial affluence at your expense. BTW, he thought Reagan was a blow-hard.
Thanks, Dad. I love you and I miss you.
That was awesome, Hero, and I agree. God bless your Dad, may he rest in peace, far away from the cares of this imperfect world. Tom Brokaw may not be much of a debate moderator, but he was right about one thing ... they were the greatest generation since the founding fathers fought off British tyranny to form the Republic. Hopefully their efforts will survive what I consider to be the greatest test this nation has faced since the Civil War.
Be A Hero

AOL

#10 Oct 10, 2008
The Truth wrote:
<quoted text>
That was awesome, Hero, and I agree. God bless your Dad, may he rest in peace, far away from the cares of this imperfect world. Tom Brokaw may not be much of a debate moderator, but he was right about one thing ... they were the greatest generation since the founding fathers fought off British tyranny to form the Republic. Hopefully their efforts will survive what I consider to be the greatest test this nation has faced since the Civil War.
Thank you for the kind sentiments.
BAN derivatives

Tomball, TX

#11 Oct 14, 2008
A $516 trillion derivatives 'time-bomb'

Most markets have something behind them. Central banks require reserves – something that backs up the transaction.

But derivatives don't have anything – because they are not real money, but paper money.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/ne...

this system has core flaws, now that "confidence that hid that has gone" all core flaws stand out exposed. Tax cuts

for Rich and get loans from china , Japan etc..to make up for it over last 30 years must stop.
Gretal

London, UK

#12 Mar 26, 2014
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