A Stagnant Economy

A Stagnant Economy - The Economy Stagnates in the 1970s...

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The Economy Stagnates in the 1970s Following the economic boom in America during the 1950s and 1960s, the economy of the 1970s was declining. A large part of the decline was caused by more women and teens entering the works force; these groups typically were less skilled and made less money than males. Deteriorating machinery and new regulations also hindered growth. Former President Lyndon B. Johnson's lavish spending on the Vietnam War and on his Great Society also depleted the U.S. Treasury, giving citizens too much money and cre- ating too great a demand for too few products. As the United States lacked advancement, countries such as Japan and Germany leaped forward in the production of steel, automobiles, and consumer electronics. Nixon "Vietnamizes" the War President Nixon brought to the White House his broad knowledge and thoughtful expert- ise in foreign affairs. He applied himself to putting America's foreign-policy in order. President Nixon's announced policy, called " Vietnamization ," was to withdraw the 540,000 U.S. troops in South Vietnam over an extended period. The South Vietnamese, with American money, weapons, training, and advice, would then gradually take over the war. The Nixon Doctrine proclaimed that the United States would honor its existing defense commitments but in the future, Asians and others would have to fight their own wars without the support of large numbers of American troops. On November 3, 1969, Nixon delivered a televised speech to the " silent majority ," who presumably supported the war; he hoped to gain supporters. Cambodianizing the Vietnam War For several years, the North Vietnamese and the VC had been using Cambodia as a springboard for troops, weapons, and supplies. On April 29, 1970 , President Nixon widened the war when he ordered American forces to join with the South Vietnamese in cleaning out the enemy in officially neutral Cambodia . The United States fell into tur- moil as protests turned violent. Nixon withdrew the troops from Cambodia on June 29, 1970 , although the bitterness between the " hawks " and the " doves " increased. In 1971 , the 26 th Amendment was passed, lowering the voting age to 18. In the spring of 1971, mass rallies and marches erupted again all over the country as anti- war sentiment grew. Nixon's Détente with Beijing (Peking) and Moscow The two great communist powers, the Soviet Union and China , were clashing bitterly over their rival interpretations of Marxism. Nixon perceived that the Chinese-Soviet ten- sion gave the United States an opportunity to play off one antagonist against the other and to enlist the aid of both in pressuring North Vietnam into peace. Dr. Henry A. Kissinger reinforced Nixon's thinking. In 1969 , Kissinger had begun meet- ing secretly with North Vietnamese officials in Paris to negotiate an end to the war in Vi- etnam.
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In 1972, Nixon made a visit to China and paved the way for improved relations between the United States and Beijing. In May 1972, Nixon traveled to Moscow, which was
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A Stagnant Economy - The Economy Stagnates in the 1970s...

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