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Final Paper-The World is Flat

Final Paper-The World is Flat - World Politics-Final Paper...

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World Politics-Final Paper: The World Is Flat MADE IN THE WORLD Made in China/ Made in India/ Made in Brazil/-with current levels of growth analysts believe that all everyday products would be manufactured by these countries, in the near future. What is significant about these three countries? Apart from geography, the progress of these three countries has heightened debate in popular culture about globalization and its implications. Furthermore, the prominence of these countries in world politics and in the world market threatens America’s status as the world’s largest and singular hegemon. One word may be used to summarize this process and the word is “flatness.” In Thomas Friedman’s book The World is Flat, the argument is put forward that technological progress, easier methods of communication and the gradual reduction of barriers has made the world more closely connected today than it was only a few decades ago. In that same regard, Friedman’s primary argument may be analyzed through three key areas: power, development and liberalism. Innovation is driving the world today, making it more integrated and connected, but it is this same integration that is beneficial for some and unfavorable for others. Since time immemorial, mankind has engaged in innovation and change. From the days of the abacus to modern times with the iPod®, progress is visible. As the old adage goes “the only thing constant is change”, and it is precisely that that has been taking place. Increasingly, those that hold the greatest technological advances are also those that have the most power. Power, which is defined as “the ability to get another
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actor to do what it would not otherwise have done (or not do what it would have done)” (J. Goldstein/ J Pevehouse 1952: 57), is concentrated in the ‘hands’ of a small minority on the international stage, but this is undoubtedly changing. After World War II (WWII) the United States (U.S.), through the ‘Marshall Plan’, sought to rebuild Europe and influence regime changes by replacing communism with capitalism. As time passed, the European economies grew and the U.S.’s position as the global hegemon was further secured. The ‘Marshall Plan’ was viewed as being so successful, that various political figureheads in American and world politics, as dicussed in Collet and Goldgeier’s “The Faulty Premises of the Next Marshall Plan”, 1 proposed the implementation of another Marshall Plan for numerous regions and groups: the Middle East and Central Asia, Palestinians and the forlorn region of Africa. This however, seems a bit contrary to what Friedman proposes. Friedman stresses that Globalization 3.0 (and the “flatteners”) have allowed some of the developing countries of the world to gain ground on the U.S. and Europe and to compete globally in the marketplace.
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