Last Man Standing

Here is my Wilson Quarterly essay on the economic and geopolitical "fallout" from the crisis.  Here are the closing paragraphs:

Despite the separation of powers built into the American political system, U.S. political institutions have, by global standards, proven themselves unusually decisive and effective at critical times. The ability to react swiftly to new challenges is an underlying theme in American history, whether we consider the early missions to the moon, the breakthroughs of the ­civil ­rights movement, the pioneering of environmental regulation, or the ­pro-­market Reagan reforms of the ­1980s.

It’s a paradox that it’s the large, diverse nations such as the United States that have the greatest ability to maneuver in a crisis and turn on the proverbial dime. That’s good for us, of course, but if a new American Century is about to be born, it’s another sign that the world faces very serious challenges. And that’s not a cause for anyone to ­cheer. 

Dan Drezner comments on related issues.


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