It's about time!
Word out of the United States is a bond rating agency has downgraded the United States credit rating one notch from its AAA rating. This has created the predictable reaction from the US government and political class but for me my reaction is: What took them so long?
Since before Reagan this is a government that has:
- Spent close to half-a-trillion dollars a year on defence despite the fact that there is no longer any threat to the US by any other country on the planet and the fact the US miliary has only won one war since end of the Second World War. Criminy, they lost the war in Iraq, are going to lose the war in Afghanistan and have been hopelessly incapable of getting rid of a dried up and desicated regime in Libya. Talk about a waste of money.
- Spent more on non-military spending that the rest of the G-20 combined.
- Lowered taxes on the very rich and on corporations, the two groups most capable of paying taxes without any undo hardship, reducing revenues just as they are increasing spending.
- Generally, living beyond its mean with that situation accelerating at a time when it is becoming increasingly evident that the government and the country are becoming less and less capable of meeting their obligation.
Now if the American political class was smart and forward thinking they would look at this event as a wake-up call and the adults within their ranks would begin pushing the radicals and wingnuts to the fringes, where they belong, and work together to begin resolving this problem.
Not that we should hold our breath on that score.
The President, who should be the one leading the charge on this, is a major disappointment and it is increasingly obvious that he lacks the vision and the spine to take up this necessary task. Unfortunately, there is no one on the other side of the American political divide who can do it either. The adults within the Republican Party are so afraid of a small minority of radicals and wingnuts within their ranks that they are paralyzed and powerless to suggest let alone do what needs to be done to fix this.
In short the American political class is so caught up in their petty, short-term political interests to do what is necessary to right the American ship.
More and more governments around the world are looking at the situation in the US and they will be taking steps to insulate themselves from any fallout of it on their countries. As those processes proceed the relevancy of the US will decrease, probably at an increased rate as time goes on.
In a century or two historians are going to look upon the events of the past few months as the trigger for the beginning of the fall of the American Empire.